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Posts with tag tanking-gear

Lichborne: DPS stats for tanking death knights

Lichborne DPS stats for tanking death knights
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done.

So Rossi bought this up in his last column, and I feel like it is a valid question. If haste is a valid gearing strategy for Paladins, why shouldn't it be for the other tanks? The idea of haste and critical strike as being valid, even desirable stats for a tank seems almost anathema, but as of Mists, especially, it's worth a look. Paladins even have a gearing strategy built around haste. Are they the only ones? Should death knights be considering haste and critical strike rating? Should Blizzard be looking at ways to make haste and critical strike rating more desirable for tanks? We'll consider those questions this week.

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Filed under: Death Knight, (Death Knight) Lichborne

Lichborne: Death knight tank pre-raid gear guide


Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. Join World of Warcraft's first hero class as we head into a new expansion and shed the new kid on the block label.

So a few editions of Lichborne ago, we talked a bit about stat priorities for death knight tanks. Because of that, I probably won't go over it much more before we head into this week's gear guide, but I did want to give you a quick refresher course. Let's run it down one more time:
  • Stamina is still king, but not as much as it was in previous expansions. You may find that there comes a time when more avoidance or absorption is better than a higher health pool, as the extremely high health pools and new boss design philosophies of Cataclysm mean, for now, that you'll rarely die from a couple hits.
  • In the mastery vs. avoidance struggle, you'll essentially need to experiment to find your best balance. Which stat is best for which tank will depend on personal playstyle and competency, healer and raid competency and composition, and other factors. You should take a balance of each, but where that balancing point is will vary. Recall that Death Strike is getting a slight nerf in patch 4.0.6, which will in turn nudge the balance more toward avoidance for most people.
  • When gearing for avoidance, try to keep dodge and parry percentages as close to each as possible, as they have the same diminishing returns. This means you'll always want to raise the one that's lower for optimal effect. You can do this by regemming and reforging instead of regearing in many cases, especially now that solid gems in every slot isn't 100% mandatory.
  • Hit and expertise are not as mandatory as they are for most DPS, but you may find they help you with threat. That said, you should never go beyond 8% hit rating and 26 expertise. If you're mastery-heavy, you'll want to focus a bit more on these stats, as missing a Death Strike could prove catastrophic.
With all this in mind, let's take a look at some of the stuff you should be rooting up as you prepare to tank the first tier of Cataclysm raiding. Note that while some ilevel 333 items may be decent stopgap options for a raider with an experienced raid group that doesn't mind a bit of undergearing, I've left them off this list, and you really should just try for the higher-level options. Finally, don't feel too guilty if you can't afford some of the crafted or world drop BoEs on this guide. Most raid groups probably won't hold it against you, and in some cases, they're arguably inferior to or only marginally better than BoP drops anyway.

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Filed under: Death Knight, (Death Knight) Lichborne

Lichborne: Pre-heroic gear for death knight tanks


Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. Join World of Warcraft's first hero class as we head into a new expansion and shed the new kid on the block label.

So here it is. You're itching to get geared up, but you're looking at long dungeon queues and difficult dungeons that are much less forgiving to the type of zerging playstyle that marked the last few patches of the Wrath era. How do you get ahead and get geared? The temptation of tanking is strong. Your queue time drops to almost zero, and you have at least some amount of innate control over what happens in a dungeon, as most people expect the tank to give orders and set the pace when dungeon diving.

That said, it also has its trials. There will be DPSers who don't listen, refuse to cast crowd control, and refuse to attack your target, instead constantly pulling aggro. There will be healers who space out while you die or who just plain can't heal you in the first place. That said, if you feel like the benefits outweigh the prospective heartburn, you'll want to read today's Lichborne. This week, we're helping you get the gear you'll need to give yourself a leg up as you lead the way into the heroic dungeons of the Cataclysm era.

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Filed under: Death Knight, (Death Knight) Lichborne

The Light and How to Swing It: No more avoidance caps


Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Please send screenshots as well as any comments to my email at gregg@wow.com. Oh, and I still love the Grand Crusader proc graphics even though they're unrelated to today's article.

One thing that we've been taught as tanks throughout most of World of Warcraft is that you had to be capped at something in order to not be insta-killed by bosses. Back when I started playing, this was referred to as reaching uncrushable. You would have to stack up 102.4 percent avoidance in order to push the dreaded crushing blows off of the boss's list of possible attacks he could hit you with. This also meant that all incoming hits were avoided or mitigated in some way, shape or form. That primary form was blocks, and abilities like Shield Block and Holy Shield at that time were custom tailored to this environment.

With the release of Wrath of the Lich King, crushing blows were deemed a thing of the past and bosses would no longer be employing them against tanks. However, we quickly had a new cap to deal with instead of that called the defense cap, aka reaching uncrittable. This meant accumulating 540 defense skill against raid bosses in order to remove bosses of being able to hit us with a critical melee attack. In early raiding tiers, this was a constant balance between gems, enchants and trinkets, as each piece of gear we accumulated could change how the scales tipped.

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

The Daily Quest: Me tanks


Here at WoW.com we're on a Daily Quest (which we try to do every day, honest) to bring you interesting, informative and entertaining WoW-related links from around the blogosphere. Is there a story out there we ought to link or a blog we should be following? Just leave us a comment and you may see it here tomorrow! Take a look at the links below, and be sure to check out our WoW Resources Guide for more WoW-related sites.

It's Monday, which means I'll be plunking around on a troll warrior this evening thanks to the Choose My Adventure program. Shamefully, while I've done plenty of questing, I haven't really done much in the way of instances or tanking. This is due to some deep-seated fear that I'm going to be the horrible tank that gets the healer killed by a runaway add, the obnoxious tank that lives by the philosophy "Continuously pull threat off of me and I will let your cloth-wearing hiney tank that mob" or just simple fear of complete and utter incompetence in general. Thankfully there's plenty out there in the WoW blogosphere regarding tanking:

Filed under: The Daily Quest

[1.Local]: PUGgin' for money and emblems for free


Reader comments -- ahh, yes, the juicy goodness following a meaty post. [1.Local] ducks past the swinging doors to see what readers have been chatting about in the back room over the past week.

ElderDruid doesn't think we'll be working too hard for our gold and our emblems in 3.3.

ElderDruid:
Look at them yo-yo's, that's the way you do it
You PUG for money on the 3.3
That ain't workin', that's the way you do it
PUGgin for money and emblems for free

Now that's just profit, that's the way you do it
Let me tell you, them guys ain't dumb
Gonna keep subscribers with the epic carrot
Keep 'em till the launch of Cataclysm.

I want my ... I want my ... I want my emblems free ...

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Features, [1.Local]

The Light and How to Swing It: Tanking the Northrend Beasts



With the Light as his strength, Gregg Reece of The Light and How To Swing It faces down the demons of the Burning Legion, the undead of the Scourge, and helps out with the Argent Ren Faire up in Icecrown on the weekends. This week, he takes a look at tanking the fantastic and terrible beasts that the Argent Crusade has collected for their Trial of the Crusader event.

The Argent Crusade has assembled a number of trials for champions, crusaders, and grand crusaders alike to fight through as they decide what forces they will take in their assault against Icecrown Citadel itself. Today, we'll take a look at the first of the events in Trial of the Crusader which is the Northrend Beasts encounter. They've assembled Magnataur, Jormungars, and Yeti (Oh My!) to test the mettle of those wishing to compete. We'll take a look at tanking each of these beasts after the break.

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Filed under: Paladin, Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

Forgetting to hit the "Need" button

Kalon at ThinkTank touches on a subject near and dear to my heart -- missing out on loot upgrades because you forget what you're supposed to want. While on an Ulduar-10 run, he passed on the Kologarn drop Mark of the Unyielding, which is close to being the best-in-slot neck for bear tanks, for one good reason (the other tank raids more than he does at the moment) and one bad one (he couldn't remember just how good the piece really is). Particularly galling, he notes, is that he recently wrote an excellent guide to tanking upgrades in Ulduar in which Mark of the Unyielding was singled out for especial commentary. Ouch.

For myself, I don't think anything quite approaches the sheer agony of having accidentally passed on Idol of Worship from Grand Widow Faerlina just because I wasn't paying attention at the time. I don't do much cat DPS, but losing the best-in-slot idol directly affecting the attack (Rip) that contributes the largest share of feral DPS is...again with the ouch. I still ask myself what was so amazingly enthralling about tanking Maexxna trash that night that I could have zoned out to that degree, and -- naturally! -- the idol never dropped again. While I guess it's possible that there are players out there who are practically perfect in every way and have never missed a drop, I have the sneaking suspicion that most of us still find a reason to kick ourselves.

Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion

New tanking enchants added in patch 3.0.8

It seems the devs took notice of the fact that many important Tanking enchants were just plain missing from Wrath, because we're getting a couple of new ones in patch 3.0.8. At the price of 5 Abyss Crystals each, you can buy the following formulae from the Shard Trader in Dalaran:
  • Enchant Weapon - Titanguard: Teaches you how to permanently enchant a melee weapon to increase Stamina by 75. Requires a level 60 or higher item. Editor's Update: Please be aware this enchantment has been removed.
  • Enchant Bracer - Major Stamina: Teaches you how to permanently enchant bracers to increase Stamina by 40. Requires a level 60 or higher item.
Before Titanguard, Mongoose remained the best tanking enchant (unless stacking threat stats), which was just downright silly. It's still a good avoidance enchantment, but for your pure tanking set you can't really pass up +750 HP on your weapon, before any talents or buffs are thrown into the equation. That's pretty incredible!

The Bracer enchant is a 28 stamina over Burning Crusade's equivalent: Enchant Bracer - Fortitude. That's quite the jump. While neither of these enchantments are especially interesting due to the lack of procs and things like that, they're definitely very good and I fully expect tanks to be scrambling for them as soon as patch 3.0.8 goes live.

Filed under: Enchanting, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Wrath of the Lich King

Ghostcrawler on long term defense changes

Ghostcrawler weighed in on the intention and existence of the defense statistic yesterday. He makes two interesting criticisms of the philosophy behind defense:
  1. It might eventually prove a problem that defense functions both as a tanking statistic and prevents you from fighting mobs that are a higher level than your character.
  2. Balance might be easier to achieve if defense provided mitigation and not avoidance.
This is rather cryptic to someone who doesn't often deal with the integral nature of the statistic, so let's break it down a bit.

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Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, News items, Death Knight

Shifting Perspectives: State of the class, part 1 - Balance


Every Tuesday, or possibly Thursday when the writer votes on Tuesday and spends Wednesday screaming and beating her laptop over formatting errors, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting Druids and those who group with them. This week Allison Robert steals John Patricelli's column once again, secure in the knowledge that she will never be forced to atone for her crime as long as she writes something nice about ferals and keeps a respectful distance from Dan O'Halloran's whip.

I hate Tauren cat form.

Good. I got that out of my system and can write something productive. Although, believe me, if I could get away with it, an entire Shifting Perspectives would be devoted to just how much I hate Tauren cat form. I mean, just look at it! Look at the angle on the horns! The cat can't bite anything! Christ, I just -- hi, Dan. Yes, I'm totally writing the column! Look at me go!

This week, mindful as always of American election-year politicking, I'm going to borrow a page from presidential duties and write a little something I like to call "State of the Class." Druids have undergone a number of changes in the transition to Wrath of the Lich King, and will acquire even more as they level to 80. We are one of Blizzard's primary targets for both gear and role consolidation, which raises a few questions over how comfortably we're going to scale in relation to pure classes and what we can realistically expect on the march to a new level cap.

The TL:DR version of this article -- I believe our future is generally bright, the Druid community continues to have a few concerns over certain aspects of the class, our focus in PvP seems to be changing the most, and I hate Tauren cat form. This is a three-part post, so let's get started with balance. However, if you want to jump ahead to feral, you'll find that here; and the third part, restoration, is here.

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Filed under: Druid, Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Instances, Expansions, Features, Raiding, The Burning Crusade, Leveling, Buffs, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives, Wrath of the Lich King, Battlegrounds, Arena

Lichborne: Of Cabbages and Kings

The time has come, the walrus said, to talk of other things...
Welcome to Lichborne, where each weekend, Daniel Whitcomb helps you keep pace with the ever-changing Death Knight class.

This week, While Death Knight tweaks continue, there's no big piece of news that really stands out. We got a nice bump in damage to our base weapon strikes, Death Coil, and the abilities that mimic them in the talent trees in the latest build. Unfortunately, poor Plague Strike still sits at a sort of dismal 30% weapon damage, meaning it still doesn't feel like it scales as well as it should. But preliminary reports are still that it's a noticeable DPS increase.

At the same time, our PvP utility and survivability was nerfed, but not in completely unexpected ways. Chains of Ice is dispellable again, as the devs felt that between it and Death Grip, it was far too hard to get away from a Death Knight. Again, this nerf is somewhat expected, if not needed, although some argue the nerf is unfair in the face of other classes that have similar abilities to ensnare and entrap opponents. I have to admit that I'm hoping we see, at the least, Chains of Ice getting put on Virulence. If nothing else, that Glyph of Blood Boil is looking a lot nicer.

Still, none of the news really jumps out and grabs me, and with the beta patches coming fast and furious, it's hard to write with any authority on something that may be changed next week. With that in mind, I've decided this week to post on a potpourri of odds and ends from around the World of Warcraft as they relate to Death Knights, both stuff that refers back to previous columns and new observations. Read on:

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Expansions, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King, (Death Knight) Lichborne

Shifting Perspectives: 2.4 Badge-A-Palooza, Druid style


Every week, Shifting Perspectives is written by someone who is not me. Except for that one time. Rather an addictive experience, stealing this column. Does anyone even read the italicized portion at the top? Hello? Nobody? I'm just gonna sing. "My baloney has a first name, it's O-S-C-A-R, my baloney has a [censored over copyright infringement] (ed. just do the column, please).

While I sincerely hope the rumors about the patch hitting soon aren't true because I'm sitting on all of 43 badges of justice right now (g@^#(*% mother-expletive piece of $%^@ fire resistance set), I am forced to admit that the times may possibly have caught up with me. I confess that for a long time I hadn't even looked at the new badge loot that will become available ingame, partly because things have gotten markedly busier with my guild of late and partly because I'd planned my 2.3 badge acquisitions very carefully and wondered if I could get away with keeping myself somewhat unspoiled for 2.4. That lasted until I found out just how expensive the 2.4 gear is actually going to be ("150 badges for a new weapon, Zach? Are you @*(#&#% kidding me?"). Noble effort while it lasted, though.

Well, no more. If 2.4 does hit next week, I'm going to be ready to stand in front of the badge vendor and know exactly what I can't afford to buy for all three specs.

This treatment looks exclusively at the new leather gear offerings available in 2.4 and assumes that you won't have access, or at least immediate access, to the new 25-man raid Sunwell Plateau. For my part I am still using six -- count 'em, six -- pieces of badge gear for various tanking purposes in Tier 6 content, which either says a great deal about the general quality of badge gear or says a great deal about how bad feral itemization is in endgame content. I'll be magnanimous today and say it's both.

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Filed under: Druid, Patches, Items, Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Features, Raiding, Bosses, Guides, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

Getting defensive about Zul'Aman tank gear

Player Faldomar of the Cenarius server has very unhappy to see that much of the tanking gear dropping in Zul'Aman is lacking in Defense. How is a tank supposed to do their job if they can't get the uncrittable benefit of 490 Defense as well as the boost to Block, Parry, Dodge and chance to be Missed?

Community Manager Bornakk responds that Zul'Aman gear is not meant to be a full replacement of Karazhan tanking gear. In fact, the low occurrence of Defense was intentional. Instead Blizzard wanted to offer pieces that filled other stat gaps to compliment alternate tanking styles. Examples are Hit Rating, Stamina and Block Value.

While it would be nice to have a full set of armor catering to our exact needs, the reality is that there are different styles of tanking (as well as healing, dps, etc.) Blizzard has chosen to service all those styles with their current system of modular mixing and matching. And if equipped armor doesn't put your stats where you want them to be, there is also the gem socket system to customize your toon even further.

Moral of the story? Don't expect a custom suit off the rack. An outfit that is going to fit you like a second skin is going to come from attention to detail on your part.

Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Warrior, Items, Raiding

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